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June 12, 2006

The power of self-reflection


People always tell me that I need to love myself first, and then life falls into place, insert platitude here, and once you finally love yourself and think you're GREAT and you are HAPPY with yourself and LOVE yourself, I guess you marry Prince Charming and finally buy a house and a riding mower and nobody farts. I really don't know! Because I do not tell people this. To me it seems kind of logical that yes, of course you need to be okay with yourself and all that, and bring the emotional baggage down from a matched 32-piece Louis Vuitton set to a more manageable backpack or emotional carry-on. Plus a purse, ya'll know. And maybe a little drama wallet. But for the most part I just sort of assumed folks all knew this ... work hard, try to be a decent human being, change what you can, accept what you can't, that sort of thing.

So I guess I do feel secretly guilty or less love-myself-ish that from time to time, I'll admit it, I am someone who needs to see myself reflected in another person's eyes. Can you feel (beautiful, sexy, funny, smart, successful, kind, worthy, anything) completely on your own?

If there is no one to watch you put on lipstick, brush your hair, touch your face, watch you across the table ... you don't wither and die. You're fine. But oh! God. That amazing, lovely feeling of having someone look at you that way, it makes you feel sexy to the bottoms of your toes, you walk taller, something changes, people sense it in you, you feel desired. It's not quite the same to look in the mirror at yourself and say, "Not too shabby!" or whatever your internal pep-talk sounds like. There's just nothing I can tell myself in a mirror that comes close to that moment, sitting at the table and you look up from the salad plate, or reach for a glass of wine and his eyes are on you and you smile, and you feel lovely all over.

It's a delicious thing. I guess maybe I never want to reach a place where I don't need it, even if that makes me a simpering old romantic fool.

Dinner was lovely. The garlic ice cream, on the other hand, was HIDEOUS.

Posted by laurie at June 12, 2006 11:02 AM